Fri. Jul 12th, 2024
United States Announces $508 Million to Protect Our Ocean

At the ninth Our Ocean Conference (OOC) in Greece, the United States is turning ambition into action with the announcement of more than $508 million to protect our ocean by advancing marine protected areas, maritime security, the sustainable blue economy and sustainable fisheries, supporting ocean solutions to the climate crisis, and combating marine pollution.

To create and support sustainable blue economies, the United States announced:

  • $8.5 million for the Partnership for Atlantic Cooperation to collaborate with the Atlantic community on Atlantic Ocean observation, marine spatial planning, scientific capacity building, and sustainable blue economy development, subject to Congressional notification.
  • The Ocean-Based Climate Resilience Accelerators Program to develop business accelerators aligned with marine-based climate resilience theme areas.
  • $1.9 million to support the conservation of ecosystems in the Caribbean region through sustainable financing.
  • $2 million in additional funding for the Conserving Coastal Ecosystems activity in Honduras to improve coastal ecosystem management.
  • An additional $1.7 million for USAID’s Central America Regional Coastal Biodiversity Project to conserve biodiversity in targeted coastal-marine areas and associated upland ecosystems.
  • An additional $817,540 for the Women Shellfishers and Food Security project, subject to the availability and Congressional notification of funds, which supports women shellfishers and mangrove conservation in The Gambia and Ghana.
  • $1 million to protect illegally traded wildlife, including sea life, by reducing illegal collection and poaching activities in the Caribbean region linked to international trade demands for food, jewelry, souvenirs, pets, and medicines.
  • $2.4 million to enhance protection, rehabilitation, and conservation of critical marine and coastal ecosystems, such as coral reefs, mangroves, and seagrass in Madagascar.

To address the ocean-climate nexus, the United States announced:

  • Publication of its National Ocean Acidification Action Plan.
  • $100,000 to support implementation of the International Maritime Organization Greenhouse Gas Strategy in developing countries, in particular small island developing states and least-developed countries.
  • $1 million, subject to Congressional notification and completion of domestic procedures, to facilitate Green Shipping Corridors in developing countries.
  • $6 million, subject to Congressional notification and the completion of domestic procedures, to expand the Information Services for Resilience Initiative and to support access to early warning systems for Pacific Island communities.
  • $4.5 million, subject to Congressional notification and the completion of domestic procedures, to support the Pacific Islands Forum Pacific Resilience Facility.
  • Reiteration of its position that sea-level rise driven by human-induced climate change should not cause any country to lose its statehood or its membership in the United Nations, its specialized agencies, or other international organizations.
  • Its first-ever Ocean Justice Strategy to advance environmental justice for communities that rely on the ocean and marine resource
  • $20 million to validate satellite ocean observation data for use in ocean-climate research.
  • $19 million to conduct interdisciplinary aquatic-focused research to advance our understanding of the earth system.
  • $6.5 million to conduct carbon monitoring science for a better quantification of ocean-based carbon.
  • $750,000 by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for efforts to enhance storm surge forecasting and preparedness in the central Caribbean (Bahamas, Dominican Republic, and Cayman Islands).
  • The release of the updated Climate Literacy Guide.
  • $2.4 million in expanded support for island climate resilience and to advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through the Local2030 Islands Network.
  • The first-ever Climate Resilience Regional Challenge grant program for U.S. coastal and Great Lakes communities that will advance NOAA’s efforts to build Climate-Ready Coasts by increasing the resilience of coastal communities to extreme weather (e.g., hurricanes and storm surge) and other impacts of climate change, including sea level rise and drought.
  • A new Industry Proving Grounds (IPG) Program to promote the development and use of actionable climate information.
  • $4 million from the U.S. Navy to support the design of a coastal class research vessel with a novel hybrid-hydrogen propulsion system.
  • $92 million from the U.S. Navy and other U.S. Government Agencies for ocean-climate research, including the impacts of extreme weather events on ocean and coastal ecosystems and the impacts of rising sea levels.
  • $68 million from the U.S. Navy to study climate impacts in the Arctic Ocean.
  • $400,000 for an initiative that connects young leaders in their role as ocean caretakers and advocates via the Blue Pacific Youth Initiative by elevating climate literacy, bolstering community adaptation projects, and reinforcing disaster mitigation plans.
  • Support for the allocation of $537,200 of funding previously provided by the Department of Energy to the International Atomic Energy Agency to support the Ocean Acidification Coordination Center.
  • $4.4 million to establish a Melanesian Youth Climate Corps with partner Social Solutions International to equip young leaders in Fiji, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, and Papua New Guinea with the skills, knowledge, and resources they need to advance disaster risk reduction and climate adaptation efforts in their own communities.

To advance marine protected areas, the United States announced:

  • More than $18.4 million to expand scientific collaborations in support of conservation of marine biodiversity.
  • $5.8 million to improve the management of marine biodiversity and marine protected areas in the Caribbean.
  • $13.4 million, subject to Congressional notification, towards protecting important coral reef habitat and strengthening community fisheries in Tanzania.

To advance sustainable fisheries, the United States announced:

  • A total of $667,500 to advance marine science and sustainable living marine resource management in international fisheries and marine science organizations.
  • $26 million in 2023 funding for the Pacific Island parties to the South Pacific Tuna Treaty to support fisheries management, development, and sustainability.
  • $60 million for the Economic Assistance Agreement (EAA) associated with the South Pacific Tuna Treaty for 2024, subject to Congressional appropriations, to promote economic development and fisheries management in the Pacific Islands under the 2023-2033 EAA.
  • $5 million to co-fund a fisheries and ocean science vessel to be managed by the SPC, subject to Congressional notification.
  • The use of Inflation Reduction Act funding to apply new technologies and improve data to conserve and recover the endangered North Atlantic right whale.
  • $20 million from the U.S. Navy for research on the protection of marine mammals.
  • $353,000 to uncover and combat illegal fishing in seafood supply chains through the Countering Nature Crime activity.
  • $1.8 million, subject to Congressional notification, to strengthen the adoption and implementation of sustainable fisheries policies, promote the adoption of sustainable fishing and aquaculture practices, and increase the technical capacity of fisheries agencies in Southeast Asia.
  • $1.2 million, subject to Congressional notification, to improve the management of marine biodiversity and fisheries resources in the Indo-Pacific region.
  • $3.3 million to combat the severe population declines of sharks and rays due to overexploitation in the Ecuadorian Exclusive Economic Zone, including the Galapagos Islands.

To enhance maritime security, the United States announced:

  • The execution of 80 mobile training team missions valued at $3.8 million in support of maritime security capacity building for 1,300 international personnel in 24 countries.
  • The opening of the IUU Fishing Center of Excellence in Hawaii to support international engagement on combating IUU fishing in the Indo-Pacific.
  • $60,000 to support Pacific Island countries’ participation at the Centre for International Law-Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security Workshop on resolving complex maritime boundary delimitation.
  • CGC Harriet Lane as the newest Indo-Pacific Support Cutter.
  • As part of the Indo-Pacific Partnership for Maritime Domain Awareness (IPMDA) initiative, more than $11.4 million for efforts to bring cutting-edge maritime domain awareness technology to the Pacific Islands, and to facilitate coordination between relevant agencies on maritime law enforcement and information analysis in the Pacific Islands.
  • The signing of a new bilateral maritime law enforcement agreement with Ecuador.
  • The signing of a new bilateral maritime law enforcement agreement with Cote d’Ivoire.
  • The launch of the Defense Operational Resilience International Cooperation (DORIC) Program and associated $10 million in support to allied and partner nation defense-related environmental and operational energy issues. The United States also announced the launch of an internal Department of Defense (DoD) working group to coordinate counter-IUU fishing activities in support of the National Five-Year Strategy to Combat IUU Fishing.
  • $500,000 provided by the Department of the Navy to support the Coastal Surveillance System in Palau.

To combat marine pollution, the United States announced:

  • Plans to support and participate in five international exercises to strengthen oil spill response preparedness globally.
  • The opening of the Marine Environmental Response Regional Activities Center to assist partner nations prepare for and respond to marine pollution incidents.
  • $14.5 million for the launch of the End Plastic Pollution International Collaborative, or EPPIC.
  • Support for the allocation of $143,000 of funding previously provided as voluntary contributions from the Department of Energy to the International Atomic Energy Agency to support the Agency’s NUTEC Plastics initiative.
  • Support for the allocation of $1.2 million of funding previously provided by the Department of Energy to the International Atomic Energy Agency to support a project in Indonesia on recycling plastic waste before they can reach the ocean.
  • An additional $62.5 million for the Save Our Seas Initiative with the goal to eliminate plastic leakage into the environment by 2040.

For further information, please contact, or visit the Our Ocean Conference website.

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originally published at Politics - JISIP NEWS